If you were tuned in to Saturday night’s NCAA Final Four semifinal games, you weren’t alone.
The two games that determined which teams would play in Monday night’s national championship game delivered a huge increase in television ratings, up 37 percent according to the NCAA.
The two Final Four games -- South Carolina vs. Gonzaga and North Carolina vs. Oregon -- delivered the second highest average semifinals rating in 12 years with an overnight rating of 10.4/21.
North Carolina-Oregon produced an 11.5/21 rating, while Gonzaga-South Carolina produced a 9.3/20, up 42 percent and 31 percent, respectively.
A single ratings points equals about 1.2 million viewers, according to the Nielsen ratings.
The uptick in ratings continues a trend for the 2017 NCAA Tournament. Turner Sports and CBS Sports’ tournament coverage is averaging a 6.9/14 rating this season, which is up 11 percent from last year. It also ties 2013 as drawing the second highest rating through the Final Four games -- just behind a record-setting 2011 year.
The national championship between Gonzaga and North Carolina has a chance to cap a terrific postseason, not only for television ratings but also for viewers. The two No. 1 seeds will play on Monday at 9:20 p.m. ET on CBS. North Carolina opened as a slim favorite over Gonzaga .
Kyle Boone, CBS Sports